UK gas prices ease on oversupplied system

LONDON Wed Aug 21, 2013 10:01am BST

Gas flames are seen burning on a cooker in London February 21, 2008, in this posed picture. REUTERS/Stephen Hird

Gas flames are seen burning on a cooker in London February 21, 2008, in this posed picture.

Credit: Reuters/Stephen Hird

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LONDON (Reuters) - British prompt gas prices dropped slightly on Wednesday morning as the system opened slightly long, allowing for some storage injections.

Gas prices for next-day delivery were trading at 64.15 pence per therm at 0830 GMT, down 0.2 pence from their opening value, and prices for within-day delivery were trading at 64 pence.

Analysts said the slight drop was the result of an oversupplied system that allowed utilities to inject excess gas into storage.

Britain's gas demand was expected to be 143.3 million cubic metres (mcm) on Wednesday, almost 42 percent below the seasonal norm. With flows seen at 153.7 mcm, the system was expected to be more than 10 mcm oversupplied.

"This morning's long system gave us a welcome opportunity to put some gas into our stocks, which are still quite low after this year's long winter," one gas analyst said.

Britain's gas storage sites are currently filled to an average of 79.98 percent, up 0.2 percentage points from the previous day but more than 16 percentage points below this time last year, according to data from Gas Infrastructure Europe.

In Britain's power market, prices for baseload (24 hours) next-day delivery were trading at 46.85 pounds per megawatt-hour.

Britain's Met Office said that temperatures would rise towards 28 degrees Celsius by Friday, with sunny conditions occasionally interrupted by showers.

(Reporting by Henning Gloystein; editing by Jason Neely)

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